Artificial reef installed in Exmouth Gulf
A $1 million artificial reef has been installed off the Exmouth coast to boost fish habitat and recreational fishing opportunities in the coastal town.
The Australian-first integrated artificial reef was partially constructed using re-purposed oil and gas industry equipment.
WA Senator Dean Smith joined industry and community representatives in Exmouth to watch the reef head off to its home between the town and Bundegi boat ramp last Thursday.
National Energy Resources Australia general manager Francis Norman said the project demonstrated the full life cycle of industry.
“It is bringing together industry, local community and small business to really develop something for the future,” he said.
“There is potential to export the technology, skills and knowledge coming out of this not just around the world, but to other parts of the country as well.”
Mr Smith said the reef was a simple idea with sound scientific backing.
“It is a great demonstration of how the whole is greater than each of the sum of its parts,” he said.
“I am a big believer that conservation and preservation of environment is important, but the world changes and it is important we use science, research and good ideas to make sure we stay in a position where we can enhance the environment, not just preserve and conserve.
“It is in that enhancement where we give young families, fishers who are much more experienced than me, the opportunity get out there and have fun.”
Artificial reefs in places such as Coogee, Rottnest Island and Mandurah have been found to support 20 times more fish than the surrounding ecosystem.
21 54.938’S, 114 11.235’E
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